The start of the two week break…

Today is a very frustrating day in the world of Arsenal as we start a two week International break. Just as we were gathering momentum and Man United and Chelsea started losing, the law of International games breaking up the lovely Premier League campaign has duly kicked in... England are playing [hold, let me google this] two teams this mid-week and weekend and they're probably going to be dull and dour affairs - with no Arsenal players involved for England, we'll have to look abroad to see how our players do. Knowing the consequences of an International window, we should all be crossing our fingers hoping we don't suffer from more injuries!

Arsene has been in the papers again. He said he is crazy and he says we can still win the league. It's true, we can - but it would require a massive slip up by United, Liverpool and Chelsea.

“I still have hope because I am a little bit crazy. Realistically, no [it is not on]. But it does not matter how much chance that we have, we have to get as close as possible. It happens to teams. Manchester United are still in a strong position. No team has looked like they were not vulnerable at all this year. Nobody has been really dominating this League this year. We have all had our weak periods.   Manchester United won 10 games 1-0 and they have the quality to finish it off. But you can see how important psychology is to a team.

“They had a big disappointment last week. That is difficult for everybody. When you have a big knock it sometime takes you a long time to recover but they will recover. I am sure of that because their manager has experience, their players have experience and they have one game in hand.”

So, if we do somehow win every single fixture we play, then we will end up on 89 points. By winning all of our remaining 8 fixtures, we will beat United, Chelsea and Liverpool on the way. United have an easy run in, but do have to play Villa next,  Middlesborough away and the Manchester derby. Three more games they could easily drop points in. Let’s say they draw all three, suddenly, we’ve made up 9 points on them (including when we beat them, which would see us level on points)… very interesting…

It’s a crazy ambition, but very possible – just as Man United won 10 games in a row earlier this season, we could do the same. I really do think we’re on a run so fingers crossed, let’s see how far up the table we can finish!

Meanwhile, up in the Midlands, Matin O’Neill has talking playing down Villa top four hope and commented that Arsenal are not cactchable – a little bit of a mind game telling us we’re safe a dry now, trying to pounce if we slip up. Let’s use this as a warning:

“You would have to say now there won’t be much of a threat from us to Arsenal’s position. It’s no fluke that the top four are where they are and we are in a dip right now. We are not as strong as those four clubs. I have said it many times before and I will say it again – we still have a lot of catching up to do. It is still reachable as Arsenal have many tough games to come. But they are getting some of their injured players back and it’s going to be very, very tough.”

We do need to focus on gaining ground and our next game is a home game against Man City – the team who inflicted our heaviest defeat of the season on us… time for more revenge? That game is on the 4th of April… it’ll be agony!

The next two weeks will see me write about not much at all…!!!

Til tomorrow…]]>

  • Dan

    < ![CDATA[I'm pretty sure it is 79 points max?

    I reckon we will win 4 or 5 of the last 8. Probably lose 1 and the rest draws. Maby i'm being overly pessemistic, but thats the way i see it panning out. 4th place, 3rd if were lucky. An FA Cup win, and champs semis completes my predictions.]]>

  • Steve

    < ![CDATA[* P GD Pts
    1 Man Utd 29 31 65
    2 Liverpool 30 33 64
    3 Chelsea 30 32 61
    4 Arsenal 30 21 55

    IF
    we win our last 8 games we'll get 24 pts and be on 79 (3 pts per game compared with 1.83 so far)

    AND IF
    Man U will need to pick up 14 pts or less from 9 games (1.55 pts per game compared with 2.24 so far)

    AND IF
    Liverpool 15 pts or less from 8 games (1.88 pts per game compared with 2.13 so far)

    and I haven't even mentioned Chelsea.

    There is a reason you get massive odds when you bet on 3 horses rather than just one, its because if any one of those unlikely events doesn't happen, you get nothing. Wenger wasn't far off when he said one in a billion.

    Its very unlikely, but we can help ourselves by taking 3 pts off Man U, Liverpool, and Chelsea.

    As Wenger says, its all about keeping as close as possible for as long as possible and hoping for the team above to crumble. Man U look like they might bottle it. Liverpool look in great shape.

    Still think Arshavin will win us the FA Cup, and Fabregas and Walcott will win us the CL.

    Sorry if I've sounded a bt negative but trust me when I say if we win the league I'll be jumping up and down like an idiot in the streets of Highbury like the rest of you.]]>

  • jeffvip

    < ![CDATA[who know we might pop out to be champions this season. A FA Cup and A Champions League win. This will be crazy... Beat Man Utd in every ocassion. Do wat Man Utd do at the year 1999.

    Ok fine, I know I'm dreaming.... Is good to be dreaming... haha]]>

  • zohaib

    < ![CDATA[All I would really want is to see our team back to full strength and ManUtd, Chelsea and Liverpool to get a true thrashing as a result, in the league games. Anything else is a bonus.

    It looks like we're really going for the FA Cup, because we're not really in the running for the league, and because we got a little genius by the name of Arshavin. We got Chelsea in the semi's don't we. Boy that would make for some match, with Chelsea's coach probably knowing how to stop Arshy. I think he's unstoppable though ;)

    If we're at full strength and we don't get plauged by injuries, it'll just be fascinating to see what happens against Chelsea in the semi's and possibly Manutd in the final ! Unless they decide to 'boycott' the FA Cup to concentrate on the league ;)

    And side by side we'll have the league games and the Champions League games. Maybe we'll see Manutd twice more this season, once in the FA Cup, once in the Champions League !]]>

  • zohaib

    In other news, Wenger believes Walcott will be back for the 1st leg against Villareal ! Woohoo

  • zohaib

    < ![CDATA[Aston Villa have the easiest fixtures from now till the end of the league. They might yet creep in and challenge us for 4th place. I've definitely not assumed we're safe, no matter what mind-games Martin O'Neill will play.

    Chelsea and Liverpool face each other in 2 Champions League ties. That could play into the hands of ManUtd in the league.
    Chelsea, ManUtd and Arsenal have to play FA Cup games as well. That gives a slight advantage to Liverpool. And Aston Villa has nothing but the league to concentrate on. An advantage to them, though the other 4 sides have decent squad depth, only us that doesn't when it comes to replacing like for like with similar quality (for example Cesc).

    Interesting stuff.]]>

  • AJ

    < ![CDATA[I agree zohaib, I think Villa may mount one final assault on fourth, but I don't think they will overtake us. Plus with O'Niels recent comments I think he's accepted he won't beat us and that must be reflecting on his team, it won't be doing them any good in picking up morale. As for Wenger, he is crazy, we could still win, but it's unlikely and yes this international break has come at the worst time possible.

    I'm just looking forward to the Champions League and the FA cup.]]>

  • devday

    Ooops, I so meant 79 points!